Clayton Keller, Coyotes look to reach milestones when Canucks visit

The Arizona Coyotes will close out their first full season at their temporary home, Mullett Arena, on Thursday when they face the Vancouver Canucks in Tempe, Ariz., in the regular-season finale for both teams.

Both teams are out of the playoffs, with the Canucks (37-37-7, 81 points) losing five of their last eight and the Coyotes (28-40-13, 69 points) dropping 10 of their last 11.

The Coyotes are playing at the 5,000-seat Mullett Arena on Arizona State University's campus while they wait for a new facility.

Arizona has enjoyed plenty of success at its temporary domain, recording a 21-15-4 record. A win on Thursday would mark the Coyotes' most home wins in a season since the 2015-16 campaign, when they posted 22.

Leading scorer Clayton Keller is also looking to make some history on the second-to-last night of the NHL season. The 24-year-old has 85 points in 81 games and needs two points to break Keith Tkachuk's single-season franchise record of 86 which was set in 1996-97.

On Monday, Keller was nominated as a finalist for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, which is awarded each year to the NHL player who "best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to ice hockey."

Keller has 22 multi-point games this season. His stellar season comes on the heels of a devastating leg injury that he suffered in March of last season when he crashed into the end boards, breaking his femur.

"We all know how special a player Kells is, but he's also a special teammate, and he's turned himself into a leader," Coyotes forward Liam O'Brien said. "Big congrats to him on that (Masterton) nomination and, hopefully, he gets awarded that."

In their most recent game against Seattle on Monday, the Coyotes jumped out to a 1-0 lead, but the visiting Kraken scored four unanswered goals behind a strong power play to win 4-1.

The Canucks, on the other hand, beat the Anaheim Ducks 3-2 on Tuesday for their third win in four games. But recent wins have come too late in the season for Vancouver to avoid missing the postseason for the seventh time in the last eight years.

Swedish star Elias Pettersson dished out two assists on Tuesday, allowing him to surpass the 100-point mark for the season.

"It means that I can breathe out again," Pettersson said. "I'm very happy with it. Something I didn't think about before this season."

Pettersson joined Pavel Bure, Alex Mogilny, Markus Naslund, and Henrik and Daniel Sedin as the only Canucks to have 100-point seasons. Bure did it twice.

"When you don't make the playoffs, you look for (little) victories and having a guy that gets 100 points is nice, but now we want team goals," Vancouver coach Rick Tocchet said.

"I love that 'Petey' got it, but it's better if we start having more team goals than the individual stats."

Andrei Kuzmenko did his part, getting his 39th goal of the season on a breakaway in the first period set up by a perfectly-timed stretch pass from rookie defenseman Akito Hirose.

Kuzmenko has been Vancouver's second-best offensive player for much of the season, but he has been in Tocchet's doghouse as of late. Kuzmenko played just one shift in the third period of Saturday's 3-2 win over Calgary before winning the game for Vancouver by scoring the only goal of a shootout.

--Field Level Media

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